Friday, April 11, 2008

Frugal Friday: Sale Preparation

Last Friday night we went to the closest Mothers of Twins club sales. If you have or expect to have babies, live near a good-sized city, and have never checked these out--do. (Search for "mothers of multiples" as well.) There are about a dozen in different regions of our city, and most of them hold two sales a year, a portion of which is open to the public.

I've been going to these sales since before D1 was born, but this was the first year I qualified to go as a member (or pre-member--they didn't want to charge until the babies had arrived safely), so we went the night before and picked up a twin jogging stroller for about a third of the retail price. We also got a beautiful child's wooden rocking chair for $5, a few small toy items, and much of what I needed to round out the duckling's summer wardrobes.

I find the prices are usually comparable to yard sales, with the one downside being that it's hard to dicker when there are thirty sellers to track down across a junior high cafeteria. (I wouldn't bother, unless it was a large item I felt was really overpriced.) The big advantage is the selection, which is about as big as a large children's resale shop. I can rely on these sales to get everything I'm going to need for the new season at one stop, which saves me a huge amount of time and energy. (Like everywhere else, though, second-hand pickings get slimmer as the kids get older.)

Before I go, I look through the hand-me-downs and any old clothes I think will fit (when do kids stop growing into a new size every season?) and write out exactly what I think I still need in colors and sizes. This year I got even smarter and wrote down the duckling's actual measurements before I went, so I could measure the t-shirts and dresses and be sure they were long enough. I also traced their feet, so I could compare the cutouts to shoe soles and be sure they could accommodate D2's wide feet and leave enough room to grow. Much less stressful and I didn't bring home any mistakes.

More Frugal Friday here.


Melissa said...

sounds like fun! We don't have the advantage of going to garage or yard sales in Vienna - um, who has a garage, or even a yard??? BUT, tomorrow I am off to a flea market, hosted by moms. I'm hoping to find some great deals - we need them (the deals, if not a few items, as well...).

Carrie said...

I LOVE sales/bargains/finds like that! Congratulations on your finds! I've heard that there's a twin sale like that around here but I haven't tracked down the information.

And yes -- when DO kids stop outgrowing their clothes every season? I've tried really hard to get us set up through 3T but his top half is in 2T already and I think my efforts have been wasted to some extent.

Michele said...

Wow- sounds great! :)
I might have to look for something like this, since we have twin baby nephews.

topaztook said...

Writing down and taking the measurements before you go is a great idea. We have a big kids' stuff sale here next weekend, and I will have to try to get my toddler to hold still long enough to take her measurements before then. :) Thanks!

Karen said...

I just went to a massive children's resale for the first time and it was a lot of fun! It was also crazy-busy. There was a line of more than 100 people waiting for the doors to open when I arrived just before 8 a.m.!

I was still able to find a few things.